Been getting a bit weary in the last few weeks, partly because of this Bubb thang, partly because of Sloven delay. Delay has characterised the Sloven response this past year. And I know it’s been the same for Nico’s family. They take an age to do anything (other than pitch up for award ceremonies). Sloven delay;
about to or in the process of doing something with no end point in sight. And no whiff of urgency.
We are still waiting to hear the outcome of the staff disciplinary investigations. It’s over a year since LB died (he died?), and five months since the independent report was published (they had to wait for that, apparently). And still nothing. How long should this process take? What the fuck does it involve? And are six or seven members of staff really still suspended on full pay?
There is also a growing stench that any staff disciplining may only involve the Nursing and Midwifery Council. No whiff of a clinician or two getting a rap across the knuckles here. Nah, that ‘responsible clinician’ label is stuffed in a cupboard, next to the out of date oxygen tanks, quicker than you can say ‘HSJ Inspirational Leader’ when something goes seriously wrong.
Sloven have always paraded their staff as their main concern. Right from the get go. Patients schmaycents. No support for LB’s peers when he died such a nasty, preventable and public death. Being the non human types they were (and clearly still are). But oodles of concern about staff wellbeing. Same with the independent investigation. Layers of staff cosseting while we were left to wait. And wait. The final version of the report further delayed as the Slovens decided, at the last minute, to let staff comment on it. They delayed sending a full set of LB’s notes until two days before the report was due. They obstructed (may turn into delay when I get my arse together to complain about this) disclosing mention of me within Sloven towers by sending a set of black pages.
Delay is a quietly cruel and inhumane tool in this context. I can’t describe what this process is like because there are no words, but I do know it has been made so, so much worse because of these delays. Completely unacceptable but seemingly unmonitored.
In thinking about the treatment of family members when there has been a catastrophic incident resulting in serious harm or death, one of the simple actions NHS England? Monitor? CQC? Someone? could do is make sure there is no delay. Through effective sanctions.
As always, it really ain’t rocket science.
Accountability for clinicians for institutional abuse seems in short supply.
In Winterbourne, for example, social workers were (eventually) struck off for failure to act on safeguarding referrals. Meanwhile, no psychiatrist faced fitness to practice. The psychiatrists (unlike the social workers) were actually there in the hospital and had regular ongoing contact with the victims. There was evidence in the SCR that they had misapplied the MHA (“In terms of clinical-leadership and professional responsibility, there appeared to be a low threshold for detaining patients under section 3 of the Mental Health Act and the safeguards of a second, independent doctor supporting the application and the independent decision by an Approved Mental Health Professional seem to have been overridden”). In other words, totally unlawful detention, on their watch, by their hand. Totally unlawful detention, which led to people being confined in a place where they were abused and couldn’t escape. Signs of abuse trauma presumably labelled as symptoms of whatever diagnosis had been slapped on them. And no clinicians disciplined.
In Cornwall, same again – no clinicians disciplined. In fact, no prosecutions of anyone.
Sara and Lucy: court appointed psychiatrist – capacity to decide where he lives: “when i was pressing him on the advantage he had stated of being nearer his mother, he commented about her being one of the last of the family left, and then said she was old (I will be 80 in October). I asked what would happen IF HE HAD HIS WISH and moved nearer her and THEN SHE DIED and he was not near anyone else he knew” They all seem not to be bound by any legal or ethical restrictions
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